23 Easy Homemade Playdough Recipes

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Little hands love to explore the world around them, and what better way to encourage that sensory play than with a batch (or three) of playdough? But you don’t have to run to the store to buy the stuff in the little yellow containers. You can make your own at home with these 23+ easy homemade playdough recipes.

You’ll find taste-safe options, glow-in-the-dark dough, and even color-changing dough. But don’t worry; you’ll also see that there are plenty of basic recipes, including some no-cook versions.

Playing with playdough is the perfect way to spend a rainy afternoon, a snow day, or some quiet time indoors. Check out the recipes below to find one to make today!

pin collage of homemade playdough recipes

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Homemade Playdough Recipes

Your little ones will love the easy playdough recipes below-featuring celebration playdough, a Kool-Aid version, and some made out of marshmallows and peanut butter that are totally safe to eat.

Other fun craft ideas:

play doh recipes

1. Basic Playdough Recipe

If you need a basic, tried-and-true recipe for homemade playdough, you can’t beat this one. It’s made with flour, cream of tartar, salt, oil, water, and food coloring. It does involve 5 minutes of cooking, but it lasts for months, so it’s worth the effort.

basic playdough

by Living Well Mom

2. Kool-Aid Playdough

Get bright colors and delicious scents by making playdough with Kool-Aid packets. Kids will love squishing and sniffing the different colors and scents.

kool-aid playdough

by The Best Ideas for Kids

3. Celebration Playdough

Have a special occasion coming up? Celebration playdough is a great choice for New Year’s Eve, kindergarten graduations, birthdays, or summer kick-off parties. Although the black dough makes the sparkles really stand out, you can make it any other color you’d like to match your theme.

celebration playdough

by Buggy and Buddy

4. Cake Mix Playdough

Celebrate the birthday boy or girl with edible cake mix playdough! It’s made with real cake mix, oil, cornstarch, powdered sugar, and sprinkles.

white cake mix playdough in silicone cups

by Messy Little Monster

5. Pumpkin Playdough Recipe

Ring in fall with this gorgeous orange pumpkin playdough. Use it to make pumpkins and gourds, or grab some cookie cutters to cut out leaves of all shapes and sizes. The added pumpkin pie spice makes it smell incredible.

pumpkin playdough

by Natural Beach Living

6. Sand Playdough

Planning a beach vacation? Grab some sand to make this fun, gritty-textured sand playdough. If you’d prefer not to use actual beach sand (in some places you’re not allowed to remove it), you can buy sand at craft stores and home improvement stores. Don’t forget to gather some shells, sea glass, and other bits and bobs at the beach to make imprints in the dough.

sand playdough

by Mama Papa Bubba

7. Rose Scented Playdough

Nothing beats the scent of real roses. Use dried roses and rose water to make a naturally-scented dough. You can add food coloring to make it pink or red or leave that out entirely for a more natural recipe.

pink playdough with dried roses

by Childhood 101

My Amazon picks:

8. Lavender Scented Playdough

Speaking of floral scents, lavender is the most calming of them all. Whip up a batch of lavender playdough for the kids to play with an hour or so before bedtime. It’ll be a wonderful calm-down tool and will smell lovely, too.

handprint in lavender playdough

by The Chaos and the Clutter

9. Easy Marshmallow Playdough

Do you have mini marshmallows, coconut oil, powdered sugar, and sprinkles at home? If so, you have everything you need to mix up a magical batch of marshmallow playdough. All the ingredients are taste-safe, so there’s no need to worry about taste-curious kids.

white marshmallow playdough with sprinkles

by Look, We’re Learning

10. Lemon Playdough

This pretty yellow lemon playdough is absolutely perfect for spring or summer. With its bright citrus scent, it’ll be an instant mood booster for the kids.

sand playdough with lemon slices

by The Best Ideas for Kids

11. Peanut Butter Playdough

Peanut butter lovers will find this playdough recipe absolutely irresistible. It’s made with marshmallows, powdered sugar, and peanut butter. That’s right — just 3 simple ingredients! It would probably work with almond butter, too, if you prefer.

peanut butter playdough with cookie cutters

by Natural Beach Living

12. Pudding Playdough

Sensory materials don’t have to be expensive. At around 50 cents a batch, you can make pudding playdough anytime you’d like. Use instant pudding mix, cornstarch, and water to whip some up for yourself.

pudding playdough

by Simply Being Mommy

Play Dough Recipes to Make at Home

Need more? How about a slow cooker playdough recipe or playdough that changes colors or glows in the dark? There are lots of cool ideas here.

So go grab your slow cooker, and let’s make some playdough!

13. Slow Cooker Playdough

If you’re the type to use your slow cooker for everything (like me), then you’ll love this slow cooker playdough… even better if you have multiple crock pots! Remember to let the dough cool completely before letting the kids play with it.

rainbow slow cooker playdough

by The Soccer Mom Blog

14. Strawberries and Cream Playdough

Make a sweet, pink strawberry playdough for Valentine’s Day! This recipe includes edible glitter, but you can leave it out or use sprinkles if you prefer.

strawberries and cream playdough

by Glue Sticks & Gumdrops

15. Hot Cocoa Playdough

Chocolate lovers will adore this hot cocoa playdough, filling mugs with it or decorating it like reindeer. It gets its yummy scent from unsweetened cocoa and vanilla extract.

hot cocoa playdough

by Childhood 101

16. Color Changing Playdough

Shock and amaze the kids with a batch of color-changing playdough. The thermochromic pigment changes color as the dough is heated with your hands while playing with it. How cool is that?

color changing playdough

by 123 Homeschool 4 Me

17. Glow in the Dark Playdough

Glow-in-the-dark toys are always a hit with the kids, so why not turn it into a sensory experience by making some glow-dough? The glow medium craft paint gives it its glowing ability, and you can make it any color you’d like.

glow in the dark playdough

by Surviving a Teacher’s Salary

18. Apple Pie Playdough

Get cozy this autumn with some apple pie playdough scented with real apple pie spice mix and some extra cinnamon. Use it to make playdough apples, pies, or leaves.

apple pie playdough

by The Best Ideas for Kids

19. Cookie Dough Playdough

For an adorable activity to go along with the book, If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, make some chocolate chip cookie dough playdough! Made with vanilla frosting, cornstarch, and chocolate chips, it’s safe if the kids sneak a bite.

cookie dough playdough

by Natural Beach Living

20. Galaxy Playdough

You’ll feel like you’re soaring through a colorful galaxy of stars and meteors while playing with this gorgeous playdough! With hues of blue and purple and lots of sparkly stars and glitter, it’ll be a favorite with little kids and older ones, too.

galaxy playdough

by Kids Activities Blog

21. Rainbow Foam Dough

Try playdough with a different texture! This foam dough recipe creates a fluffy and light version, but it’s not taste-safe, so keep that in mind if your little one is still in the mouthing stage. It’s made with shaving cream and cornstarch and is best played with once as it doesn’t hold up well to storage.

foam dough

by Little Bins for Little Hands

22. Jelly Bean Playdough

Save all those Easter jelly beans to make some of this fun playdough. Colorful, squishy, and peppered with jelly beans in various colors, it’s a fun way to work on fine motor skills. You’ll love our list of bunny crafts and chick crafts, too!

jelly bean playdough

by Lemon Lime Adventures

23. Minions Banana Playdough

Any Minions fan will have a blast playing with this banana-scented playdough. Use the dough and some loose parts to build your own squishy little minion.

minions banana playdough

by Natural Beach Living

Which playdough recipe do you think your kids will like best? Don’t forget to pin this list of easy homemade playdough recipes to come back to whenever you need a quick and easy playdough recipe.

More Fun Sensory Activities for Kids

long collage of homemade playdough recipes

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